PAMMENT, Victor Frederick D.C.M.

16620, Lance Corporal, Victor Frederick PAMMENT D.C.M.
Aged 30

11th Battalion, Suffolk Regiment
Killed in Action on Monday, 9th April 1917

He is not named on the Newmarket War Memorial

Born in Bury St.Edmunds on 26th February 1895 [Bury St.Edmunds 4a:796], baptised at St John's on 6th June 1895, 3rd son of Frederick Thomas and Sophie PAMMENT (née KEEBLE) of 5 Tayfen Terrace, Bury St Edmunds.

1901 census...Victor [6] was at 10 Ingram Street, Huntingdon with his father Frederick [34], a railway engine driver born Cherry Hinton; his mother Sophia [36] born Elmsett,Hadleigh; his brothers Albert [10] and Edgar [8] both born in Bury St Edmunds, and his sister Florence [3] born in Cambridge. His elder brother had died in 1897, aged 8.

1911 census....Victor [16] was now at 16 Warrington Street, Newmarket with his parents; sister Florence and brother Leslie [6] born Cambridge. Brother Albert was at Farnham, at Talavera Barracks, in the Leicestershire Regiment,and Edgar [18] was an Ordinary Seaman 3rd Class, serving at Royal Sailors Rest, Portsmouth.

Naval records have his mother Sophie later at Cherry Vale, Back Hill, Ely.

His brother Edgar Thomas PAMMENT, a Royal Navy Sick Berth Attendant, click here died of illness at HMS Victory, Portsmouth in 1916. Brother Albert survived the war, gaining the 1914 Star with clasp (an Old Contemptible), the War Medal and Victory Medal.

The 11th Suffolk had moved into their assembly line on April 8th, just south east of Roclincourt. On the 9th, at 5:30 am the artillery opened up and the whole battalion, 600 strong with 20 officers, advanced to attack the German forward trenches. Hostile machine gun fire checked but did not stop them and "A" Company reported taking Black Line with no losses. By 8 am HQ moved forward to the German second line, 5 runners and the orderly room Sergeant capturing 20 Germans who seemed little inclined to fight. As soon as Blue Line was occupied the battalion set to work consolidating their position. After dusk some were sent off to assist the 27th Northumberland Fusiliers nearby, but found the enemy counter attack had been easily repulsed. The weather had deteriorated badly with occasional heavy snow storms.
Victor was killed by a sniper as they closed on their objective. 24 of the 11th Suffolks died that day, eight, having no known grave, are recorded on the Arras Memorial

His Distinguished Conduct Medal was gazetted 22nd September 1916:-
16620 Pte. V.PAMMENT - For conspicuous gallantry as a member of a machine gun team. When the gun commander had been wounded, and the second in command killed, he picked up the gun and spare parts and, unaided, carried them forward, continuing to fire the gun.

The Ely Standard was more explicit, referring to the 1st July, the opening day of the Battle of the Somme:
"He showed the greatest bravery and utter disregard of the perils which surrounded him. The battalion had orders to take a certain place at all risks, and the men as they went over the parapet, met with a deadly fire from the enemy.Some idea of the nature of the fighting will be gleaned from the fact that Lance Corporal Pamment was the only one of the machine gunners left of his Company who advanced tot he second line of the German trenches, the majority having been cut off by the Germans.
Unaided, the L/Cpl kept up a rapid fire until reinforcements reached him, and through his great bravery and fearlessness the position was held.
...among those who fell wounded was Sergt Barber, who also lives on Back Hill.He has now recovered and, at home for a few days, spoke in glowing erms of Pamment's bravery. Bullets, he said, were flying all around him and it was really marvellous how he escaped unhurt".

© Commonwealth War Graves Commission

He is buried in Bailleul Road East Cemetery, St.Laurent-Blagny Ref: 1.A.16
and is commemorated on the City of Ely War Memorial.

click here to go to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website for full cemetery/memorial details